The scourge of the veganazi
To commit to a lifestyle that abstains from the exploitation of animals is a truly noble choice to make and we should all be very thankful that there are people out there who put nature before themselves. However, vegan culture appears to have given rise to a new hard-line that is far removed from the mindful ideology that it purports to be. These are 5 reasons why this new veganism is more regressive than progressive and why it needs to disappear:
1. False motivations
False motivations will rarely produce outcomes true to their supposed cause as they will always be hindered by bias.
Whilst many vegans will cite ethical reasons to “go vegan”, the conversation soon shifts to a philosophical debate of whether or not humans, who have developed a conscience and contemplate mortality, are wrong to kill where other animals are justified in doing so.
At no point however, is extinguishing the life a living plant called into question. To hold the belief that some lifeforms matter more than others surely contradicts the vegan ethos. What’s more is that it is often the lifeforms closest to us as humans that vegans prefer. The cute pets, farm yard animals and wildlife that we most closely identify with but less so the spiders, leeches or giant squid. What this reveals is that the true reason why many switch is not health nor the environment but simply because they watched too many Disney cartoons as children and are squeamish around meat and death.
After you’ve lied to yourself as to the true reason for becoming a vegan, you then have to start not only believing it, but you must also convince others, at all cost, lest you be revealed as a fraud.
Dogmatism can be defined as the tendency to lay down principles as undeniably true, without consideration of evidence or the opinions of others and veganism is this definition incarnate. Search online or social media and you will discover an infinite library of vegan propaganda that projects human voices and ideas onto animals that have never possessed the capacity to have them. These emotionally charged nuggets of misinformation commonly proport notions such as:
- Animals have rights and are innocent – Animals do not have rights. That is to say that no one and nothing has the right to anything. Rights are a concept made up by humans that only have meaning if you comply with them. If a human were to encounter a bear in the wild neither the human nor the bear has the right to live over the other, just the ability to kill or be killed. Likewise an animal cannot be innocent by the virtue that it cannot be guilty of anything. This is to bestow an abstract human value onto animals who are oblivious to such ideas.
- Animals are pets/friends – For the most part, any kind of positive reaction you might get from a non-domestic animal would be based upon whether or not you might feed it. But, on the whole, if a non-domestic animal sees another animal of a size that might pose a threat it will be wary and afraid, as it is right to if it wants to survive in nature.
- Veganism is better for health – 2 billion years of human evolution has shown that we are omnivores who survive on a variety of foods and thrive on animal products. Therefore any notion that to completely remove entire groups of highly nutritious foods from our diets will improve our health is nonsense.
The problem with this misinformation is that it weakens the argument. Veganism is less harmful to animal welfare and the environment and these arguments are strong enough. Attempts to embellish, twist and reinvent information only act to confuse those seeking acurite information on the subject.
3. Hijacking ethical progress
Another of the true reasons behind converting to veganism is the supposed “moral hierarchy of food”, where vegans will position themselves at the top, looking down in superiority over others. This has much less to do with seeking ethical progress than it does being able to find a way to make yourself feel better than others. Again not the caring ethos which should befit such an ideology.
Positioning themselves in such a way, vegans assume ownership over all matters ethical, as to concede in any way would risk your seat atop the hierarchy. We are then faced with a bizarre schism between vegans and those who wish to address the same issues by non-vegan means. One case in point is Farms Not Factories, a media focused attempt to raise awareness of cruel factory farming processes and to promote higher animal welfare standards, whose Facebook page is constantly besieged by vegan trolls who stand in opposition. Alternatively the Hunt Saboteurs Association, of whom many of its members are vegan, often alienate supporters and distract from the business of preventing illegal fox hunting by conflating that with issues of a vegan nature.
If we use the analogy of religion – Jainism is the true religion of peace with its most extreme adherents wearing cloth across their face and walking with a brush for fear of killing an insect by accident. However it is against Jain principles to criticize those using force to stop wars, not least because the faith also teaches non-absolutism. The path to peace is the path to peace just as anyone seeking progress in ethical matters, regardless of the means, should be united.
Veganism forces an all or nothing division which prioritizes tribal divisions over the end goal, meaning that the energy and resources are diverted from the task at hand.
4. Bordering on fascism
Fascism, a system of social organization that centers upon loyalty to a state, began in the early 20th century with Benito Mussolini’s Partito Nazionale Fascista as well as the Nazi party and is still seen today in ISIS and the ideas of Donald Trump. Fascism makes a clear distinction between good people who pledge their loyalty to the state in the belief that this will enable their state to become greater; and bad people who the blame for any wrong doing against the ambitions of the state. This is often achieved by employing agents to monitor speech and the media, spread propaganda and censor those who disagree. Fascists believe that free-thought is obsolete and that you either think like them or face being ostracized.
It doesn’t take too much of a leap for comparisons to be drawn between fascism and veganism. As with fascism, vegans often remain totally loyal to the cause, regardless of any contradictory information, and seek to recruit new vegans in the hope that veganism will one day reign supreme. Online and increasingly moreso offline, vegans spread misinformation and propaganda, fiercely attacking anyone who criticizes or questions the vegan ideology in any way. It’s “go vegan” or “go home”.
This approach acts only to polarize opinion on veganism with those who support its ethos and those hate it, despite any ethical benefits. Just as much progress can be made from discussing the plethora of reasons to kick junk food as can be made by convincing someone to try team vegan, so why waste that opportunity?
5. We’re in this together
Veganism acts to place identity in the way of progress. Whether you identify as a vegan or not, we all must bear the burden of improving our relationship with animal welfare, the environment and health. The hijack of this domain by a lifestyle, polarizing in its ‘all or nothing’ stance, makes it more likely that opportunities will be missed.
The human race as a whole has been one of the greatest threats Earth has ever known, with an infinitesimally small number of us who can claim to have zero negative impact on the planet (e.g remote indigenous tribes etc..). When we compare omnivorism with veganism we must remember that we aren’t talking about who does and who doesn’t harm the planet as we are all guilty of this in some way or other. Rather, what we are talking about is a scale of damage. If it is truly our ambition to progress in environmental and animal welfare matters then we must first accept that none of us are perfect and humbly accept all support in the matter. To eat plant-based foods, take steps to improve animal welfare, reduce pollution and live healthy lives does not come with the requirement that you “go vegan”.
It is the duty of every living person to act as custodian of the planet, its animals and of ourselves.